Smoke is seen above the trees after an unpermitted brush fire went out of control behind a residence on Pine Street in Jay. Donna M. Perry/Sun Journal

JAY — Fourteen fire departments from four counties responded to assist at an unpermitted burn of brush behind a residence on Pine Street on Wednesday that spread fast with a little bit of wind pushing it up steep terrain in a heavily populated, residential area.

A Maine Forest Service helicopter drops water to try to slow a fire that was spreading Wednesday toward a heavily populated area in Jay. Firefighters from 14 fire departments responded to help fight the brush fire. Jay Fire Rescue Department photo

“It spread really quickly,” Fire Rescue Chief Mike Booker said.

Pine Street is located off Elm Street, which is a very steep road off Route 4.  The house is owned by Karen Bailey, Booker said.

Smoke could be seen rising above the trees.

A neighbor who reported the fire at about 1:40 p.m. came across the yard with a garden hose to extinguish it as the fire headed toward Bailey’s garage.

Firefighters used a lot of hand tools and were able to get hundreds of feet of fire hose to the area. It is a fire hydrant district.

A Maine Forest Service helicopter dropped water from the air to try and quell the fire.

Patty Cormier, director of Maine Forest Service, is a Farmington fire rescue firefighter, who arrived with that department, Booker said. Another forest ranger was also on scene.

“We needed manpower,” Booker said. Sixty-five firefighters responded to assist.

It took approximate 2 to 2½ hours to get the fire under control, Booker said.

Firefighters were able to get to the fire from Pine Street and Riverview Road, which is off Pineau Street, he said.

Jay was assisted by fire departments from Livermore, Livermore Falls, Wayne, Fayette, East Dixfield, Dixfield, Canton, Mexico, Wilton, Farmington, Temple and Chesterville. A NorthStar EMS ambulance was staged in the area, and Jay police officer David Morin blocked traffic from one end of Elm Street while Police Chief Richard Caton IV blocked it from the other end. Livermore Falls police officer Steve Gould also assisted and brought water to the firefighters.

“It was a concern because it is a heavily populated area with a lot of residences,” Booker said.

There were no injuries.

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